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Chapter Three: The Theology

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Chapter Summary

Strophe I refers to the Logos in his preexistent state; Strophe II moves forward to a statement about the Logos at the time of creation; Strophe III moves the thought forward to the time of the Logos' incarnation; and Strophe IV expresses the Logos' activity in the present. This logical and theological organization of the lines in John 1:1-5 reinforces the conviction that there is an Christological hymn in four strophes. More specifically this logical and theological interpretation of the lines provides a complete meaning for the four strophes, a complete picture, a complete dramatic representation, a beginning, a middle, and an end, and this suggests that the strophes before us constitute the whole of a Christological hymn. Thus in some respects Christian belief and theology must be at least in theory conditioned by historical evidence, and in practice open to and vulnerable to the possible findings of historical research.

Keywords: Christian theology; Christological hymn; John; strophe

10.1163/9789004266902_005
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